"What sort of diary should I like mine to be? Something loose knit and yet not slovenly, so elastic that it will embrace any thing, solemn, slight or beautiful that comes into my mind. I should like it to resemble some deep old desk, or capacious hold-all, in which one flings a mass of odds and ends without looking. I should like to come back, after a year or two, and find that the collection had sorted itself…into a mould, transparent enough to reflect the light of our life and yet steady, tranquil composed with the aloofness of a work of art."
I have sometimes dreamt ... that when the Day of Judgment dawns and the great conquerors and lawyers and statesmen come to receive their rewards - their crowns, their laurels, their names carved indelibly upon imperishable marble - the Almighty will turn to Peter and will say, not without a certain envy when He sees us coming with our books under our arms, "Look, these need no reward. We have nothing to give them here. They have loved reading.
~ Virginia Woolf
Well, these are our two starting points. In one way (our old phrase!) God includes evil, in another way he does not. What are we to do next? My beginning of the `next' will be to deny another remark of yours - where you say `no good without evil'. This on my view is absolutely untrue: but the opposite `no evil without good' is absolutely true. I will try to explain what I mean by an analogy.
Supposing you are taking a dog on a lead through a turnstile or past a post. You know what happens (apart from his usual ceremonies in passing a post!). He tries to go the wrong side and gets his lead looped round the post. You see that he can't do it, and therefore pull him back. You pull him back because you want to enable him to go forward. He wants exactly the same thing - namely to go forward: for that very reason he resists your pull back, or, if he is an obedient dog, yields to it reluctantly as a matter of duty which seems to him to be quite in opposition to his own will: tho' in factit is only by yielding to you that he will ever succeed in getting where he wants.
Now if the dog were a theologian he would regard his own will as a sin to which he was tempted, and therefore an evil: and he might go on to ask whether you understand and `contained' his evil. If he did you cd. only reply `My dear dog, if by your will you mean what you really want to do, viz. to get forward along the road, I not only understand this desire but share it. Forward is exactly where I want you to go. If by your will, on the other hand, you mean your will to pull against the collar and try to force yourself forward in a direction which is no use - why I understand it of course: but just because I understand it (and the whole situation, which you don't understand) I cannot possibly share it. In fact the more I sympathise with your real wish - that is, the wish to get on - the less can I sympathise (in the sense of `share' or `agree with') your resistance to the collar: for I see that this is actually rendering the attainment of your real wish impossible.'
I don't know if you will agree at once that this is a parallel to the situation between God and man: but I will work it out on the assumption that you do. --C.S. Lewis
"'Good will,' murmured John Adair. 'No one ever stops to think what that means. Not an easy thing. Unregenerate man had he the courage to inquire into what he is really willing right down below the surface, would get a very nasty shock. Very rare, as rare as peace. When a man has both, the angels make quite a song and dance about it.'" -Elizabeth Goudge
You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting-
over and over announcing your place
In the family of things
" Do not wait for the boy to grow up before you begin to treat him as an equal. A proper amount of confidence, and words of encouragement and advice...give him to understand that you trust him in many ways, helps to make a man of him long before he is a man in either stature or years....
If a boy finds he can make a few articles with his hands, it tends to make him rely on himself. And the planning that is necessary for the execution of the work is a discipline and an education of great value to him."
reprinted from Architect and Building News by the Wright Brothers and David McCullough
It (the story) feeds and enriches the life of the spirit, enlarging the hearers' and teller's experiences, and the story teller must ever bear his high calling in mind. There should surely be no more splendid mission, yet we still find that small reasons and aims are offered for the telling of stories...they are to give information, to cultivate the habit of concentration;...to form a basis for composition and other language exercises...to be a peg on which to hang various school activities. Let us be simple and wise and honest enough to to tell the story for the pure love of telling it, for 'it is in beauty and love and joy and laughter that we must find the way of speaking to the soul--the soul that does not appear in the statistics and is therefore always left out of the accounts.'" W.A. Bone
"Ideas won't keep; something must be done about them."